Good TV Shows

Saturday, July 23 by Andrew Jett

Good TV shows can endure much longer than their initial on-air run. If the scripts are inventive and the acting is convincing, a TV show can live on through reruns, endearing itself to generations of viewers. As a result, there are many good TV shows out there, easily located on almost any channel.

  1. “Family Guy” Pushing the boundaries of animated television, this Fox show is famous for its sometimes questionable humor. First hitting TV in 1998, it’s an edgy sitcom about a dimwitted man and his quirky family. Although the humor sometimes seeps into the low-brow, you’ll still find yourself laughing.
  2. “Two and a Half Men” Even though the off-screen exploits of its star sometimes overshadow this TV show’s quality, it remains one of the most well-written series on air, and has been a major hit for CBS since its premiere in 2003. Charlie Sheen and John Cryer star at brothers and roommates who find themselves in some precarious situations as they attempt to raise Cryer’s young son.
  3. “South Park” Hiding beneath a cloak of animated juvenile humor is the most socially relevant TV show in history. Creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone have the market cornered on the satirical, pulling off astute cultural references disguised as the adventures of four young boys in Colorado. It’s been the flagship series for Comedy Central ever since its debut in 1997, and the barometer by which all good TV shows should be measured.
  4. “Mad Men” This TV show has the advantage of being set in the 1960’s, at a time when America’s social and political attitudes were at a crossroads. The resulting show is a slick, accurate depiction of a cultural whirlwind. Premiering on AMC in 2007, the series follows a group of ad executives as they mirror the changing attitudes and tastes of Americans.
  5. “The Simpsons” The gold standard for animated television excellence, this TV show has become a worldwide phenomenon since its debut on Fox in 1989. Patriarch Homer Simpson and his family don’t skimp on laughs as they work their way through daily life, and the end result is as good a TV show as you’ll ever see.
  6. “Lost” As addictive as it is confusing, this TV show left millions of viewers scratching their heads every week. When it premiered on ABC in 2004, the main plot elements revolved around a diverse group of people stranded on an island after a plane crash. As the show unfolded, viewers were treated to an increasingly complex web of mysteries surrounding the cast.
  7. “The Sopranos” Good TV shows have never been quite as enthralling as this HBO series. When it premiered in 1999, viewers were treated to an in-depth character study of mob boss Tony Soprano and his dysfunctional family. This TV show’s consequent episodes delved deeper into the psyche of organized crime, giving an unprecedented view of Mafia life.
  8. “Seinfeld” Billed as a “show about nothing,” this TV series ran the gamut of random plotlines during its nine-season run. Debuting on NBC in 1989, the show follows comedian Jerry Seinfeld and his offbeat circle of friends as they navigate their way through life in the Big Apple.
  9. “Cheers” Though it didn’t immediately find an audience when it premiered on NBC in 1982, this good TV show became a ratings powerhouse. Set in a Boston bar, the show is an endearing and hilarious look at the employees and regulars. Ted Danson, Woody Harrelson and Kelsey Grammer add familiarity and star-power to this very well-written show.
  10. “Friends” Perhaps the best ensemble sitcom of all time, this TV show was a relatable hit for NBC. First hitting the airwaves in 1994, it offers an entertaining look at a group of six friends as they explore life and love in New York City. Though it’s always good for laughs, this TV show has got a lot of heart.

-Andrew Jett

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